Ford’s decision to construct the current-generation F-150’s body purely of aluminum paid off in terms of lightweighting, fuel economy, and sales, but it set the automaker up for financial frustration in the long term. At the time of the truck’s development, Ford didn’t know hefty tariffs on foreign aluminum and steel were coming down the pipe. A second income-sucking tariff hit in July, when the U.S. applied an import duty of 25 percent on a slew of Chinese goods, prompting China to up its own tariffs on American goods, including automobiles. Ford isn’t having it. Having already lost $1 billion in profit, CEO Jim Hackett has a message for President Trump. If the U.S. doesn’t resolve its trade disputes in a hurry, expect Ford to suffer even more, Hackett claimed. In an interview with Bloomberg, the CEO said, “The metals tariffs took about $1 billion in profit from us — and the irony is we source most of that in the U.S. today … [Read more...] about As Aluminum-heavy Ford Takes a Hit, Hackett Appeals to Trump to End Trade Disputes
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Ford hopes to nab the attention of Chinese customers by unveiling a new midsize sport utility vehicle specifically designed for the region, placing an emphasis on more space for less money — a concept which would likely be appreciated worldwide. However, the model isn’t entirely new. The automaker is actually reviving the Ford Territory, an Australian-market crossover based on the defunct Falcon. It’s a departure from the trend of Western manufacturers focusing on China’s appetite for luxury vehicles. Still, Ford may have missed its opportunity there. Chinese consumers swarmed Buick like flies on a carcass; Ford wasn’t so fortunate. It performed abysmally in The People’s Republic this year, posting 400,443 sales for the first half of 2018. That represents a 25 percent slip compared to last year’s volume and the worst first half since 2001. Colossal Chinese tariffs on American automobiles haven’t helped, and Ford has … [Read more...] about Ford Launching Cheap, ‘Basic’ Midsize SUV to Tempt China
Compact pickup trucks, lawsuits over tiny fish, unexpected dangers on the road and more await you in The Morning Shift for Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018. 1st Gear: Ford’s Got Plans, Maybe A new compact Ford unibody pickup truck is in the works with plans to bring it to the U.S. market in 2022—at least, according to sources familiar with the matter. Those sources spoke to Automobile recently, saying that the truck would be built on the next-generation Focus platform. With Ford throwing most of its cars out the window here in the North American market because everybody wants trucks, SUVs and crossovers, it makes sense to build yet another size variation of a truck. Sources told Automobile the reported new smaller truck would slot in below the new Ford Ranger, which has gotten pretty large itself. From Automobile: Ford is preparing a compact pickup truck that would fill the space left open when its Brazilian-built, Fiesta-based subcompact Courier pickup was replaced with the … [Read more...] about Is Ford Bringing an Actual Small Truck Back to the U.S.?
After years of neglect, the midsize pickup truck segment is finally taking off again. GM reintroduced the Chevrolet Colorado and the GMC Canyon for 2015, Toyota finally redesigned the Tacoma, and later this year, Ford will bring back the Ranger. For buyers who don't need a full-size pickup, it's great to have several midsize options again. But whatever happened to small trucks? If the latest report is accurate, Ford may be about to introduce one of those, as well.According to our friends at AUTOMOBILE, Ford's currently developing a compact truck to replace the old Brazilian-built Courier. And while it's primarily intended for international markets, Ford is also reportedly considering selling it in the U.S. As a unibody vehicle, it probably wouldn't be as profitable as the F-150 currently is, but a third Ford truck could make it difficult for GM to continue its lead in overall truck sales. The F-Series far outsells the Chevrolet Silverado, but when you include the Chevrolet Colorado, … [Read more...] about Ford Considering Focus-Based Small Pickup Truck for the U.S.
Near the end of 1966, a significant change took place at Shelby American. In a decided shift away from the antisocial G.T. 350, a road-racing rogue of a car, Shelby smoothed out the rough edges to provide a performance car more acceptable to a wider market—the G.T. 500. It was like he had traded in his bib overalls for slacks and a sport coat. After all, his audience was maturing and demanding more civility, and the G.T. 500 was a grown-up sports car for smooth touring—at least by comparison with its predecessor.Around this same time, Tom Perry-Smith was just a young tyke, enjoying summer break in the High Sierra of California. Little did he know how this escape would affect him for years to come. “I was bitten by the Shelby snake when my parents bought a vacation home at the south end of Lake Tahoe in 1967,” he recalls. “Just down the road was Carroll Shelby’s South Lake Tahoe dealership. I used to ride my bike down to the dealership and just sit in … [Read more...] about His Childhood Dream Car Was This 1967 Shelby G.T. 500